FACT rings in the changes for a remarkable fund raising night that brought taxi drivers, staff, commercial operators and management together

FACT cheque presentation ( left to right) Gary Christy, Michelle Irvine, Dave Humphrey and Jenny Par

FACT cheque presentation ( left to right) Gary Christy, Michelle Irvine, Dave Humphrey and Jenny Parker.FACT was handed 500 from the coach taxi and bus association to boost their charitable fund raising event at the Braza, March. Picture; IAN CARTER - Credit: Archant

Taxi drivers, staff and commercial operators joined the new look management team of community transport provider FACT to ring in the changes.

It was an extraordinary evening that seemed unlikely even a few months ago but the once opposing factions came together to raise money to help provide community transport for the Fenland community.

Although a major police inquiry continues into multiple allegations into the former FACT management, new chairman Gary Christy heralded the changed look and renewed spirit.

He was speaking after a successful charity horse racing night at the Braza Club in March which raised nearly £1,200 for FACT.

Mr Christy said: "This was a new approach for us and is the first of many events we are hoping will help us to continue to provide our community transport services and an opportunity for all those in the community to show their support for the new FACT."

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He added: "This is a starting point for our new board of trustees and we are looking to recruit new trustees, in particular, treasurer and secretary roles.

"We are looking for people who bring knowledge of community and transport, anybody interested in joining us for this journey please contact michelle@cotransport.org in the first instance, all training will be provided for these roles."

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The race night total included a cheque for £500 presented by Mark Holland, Dave Humphrey and Jenny Parker on behalf of the Cambridgeshire Bus, Coach and Taxi Association.

"All of the money raised will help support community transport services provided by FACT, HACT and ESACT," said Mr Christy.

"Special thanks go to local businesses that provided some lovely prizes."

Michelle Irvin, new head of finance and funding who organised the event, said:"It was great to see so many people attending in support of the new FACT.

"The amount raised helps towards our community transport services which so many people rely on.

"We will be holding more of these events in the future and hope to bring the community together in many ways."

She said: "I would like to take this opportunity to thank staff members - Eden Hayes, Carly Ransome, John Davis and Steve Wright for volunteering to drive our members to enable them to attend.

"Thanks also go to Nicola Christy and Paul Irvine for assisting getting everything set up and providing teas and coffees and to Steve and Stella Shannon for organising the raffle on the night."

Michelle added: "We are looking to start a new Friends of FACT group to organise fundraising events and anybody who thinks this might be for them please contact me at michelle@cotransport.org."

* The police inquiry - named Operation Dearborn - is under way into Fenland transport provider FACT and is focused on its former manager Jo Philpott and not on the current organisation.

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